I paid a visit to Las Labradas yesterday – a sacred site north of Mazatlán, Mexico. I’ve been there countless times since my first visit in 1999, each one as breathtakingly beautiful as the last. The expansive, pristine beach and ocean view alone are beautiful, but it’s the rich array of petroglyphs carved into the volcanic stone that really speak to me. Moving from boulder to boulder, light and shadow play on the surfaces, revealing spirals, figures and other mysterious glyphs. These visions and myths, voices of an ancient people, were created in ritual by The Toltecs thousands of years ago. I can’t help but be inspired by its symbols, the merging of stone and water, and the spirit of place.
In the last 15 years, Las Labradas has become a protected site and a tourist destination – a blessing and a curse. One now sees huge tour buses in the parking lot. On my first visit there was no parking lot much less a barely navigable road. On previous trips, we would have the place to ourselves, rarely seeing another human being. This time, a “guide” silently shadowed me my entire walk, yet (blessedly) allowed me space to do my own thing. The rocks still hold their magic and will continue to call me back.
Some of my monotype prints inspired by Las Labradas:
There is a chapter in my book, Art & Sacred Sites: Connecting with Spirit of Place, on Las Labradas. Contact me for orders: firstname.lastname@example.org